7 Low-Carb Foods That Are Surprisingly High In Protein

Including cheese!

low carb high protein foods
Image: Brooke Lark

While we’re firm believers that foods aren’t inherently ‘good’ or ‘bad’, it’s hard to deny that some foods have more going for them than others. There are those foods like donuts and lollies are basically the bad boys of the culinary world—we know they have very little to offer us in the way of nutrition, but sometimes we just can’t resist. Then, we have those rare holy grail foods: the knights in shining armour, if you will. These foods have it all going on: they’re low in refined carbs, a good source of healthy fat AND high in protein. You may be thinking that eggs are the only food to ever fit that nutritional profile, but you’d be wrong! Read on for 7 delicious low-carb foods that are also surprisingly high in protein.

1. Avocado

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Image: iStock

Apart from being super delicious, avocado is mainly known for being a fantastic source of good fat. But what most people don’t realise is that it’s a considerable source of protein, too! One avocado has around 4 grams of protein to only 3 grams of carbs. Combine that with the 28 grams of fat and it’s pretty much the perfectly nutritionally balanced food!

2. Cheese

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Image: iStock

The good news just keeps on coming! While the exact amount varies depending on the type, your cheese platter can be surprisingly high in protein. As a general rule of thumb, the harder the cheese the higher the protein—with parmesan in the top spot with a whopping 10 grams per serve. Meanwhile, mozzarella is also respectable at 7 grams per serve and cheeses like Babybel and Bega Stringers makes great convenient keto snacks with 0 grams of carbs and 4 grams of protein.

3. Peanut butter

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Image: iStock

Yet another beloved favourite that packs a serious protein punch! Peanuts have the highest protein count of all nuts, making its spread counterpart an excellent post-workout choice. Peanut butter has around 10 grams of protein, 12 grams of fat and 11 grams of carbs per serve. Of course, it is a fairly calorie-dense food (around 187 per serve) so you probably wouldn’t want to go eating jars of the stuff in the name of fitness.

4. Artichokes

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Image: iStock

Here’s a random one! Artichokes are one of the highest protein vegetables (although, the jury is still out on whether they’re technically considered a veggie or a flower), with four grams per serve—compared to 6 grams of carbs. They also have the highest fibre count of any vegetable, making them an excellent filling option for any meal.

5. Seitan

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Seitan is kind of an enigmatic food—unless you’re vegetarian, you may not have even heard of it. Despite being derived from wheat (it’s the gluten protein that remains after wheat flour has been ‘washed), it’s low in carbs, at around 3 grams per serving. It’s also sky-high in protein (around 17 grams) and has a simple texture to tofu, making it a great meat alternative for vegans and vegetarians.

6. Edamame

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Image: iStock

Also known as soybeans, edamame is an excellent source of plant-based protein—clocking in at 18 grams per one cup serve. That’s compared to 8 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbs and 8 grams of fibre per serve. It’s pretty much the perfect snack!

7. Pork rinds

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Image: iStock

This super snackable food is perfect for when you’re craving something salty, without the carbs. It has virtually zero carbs and around 8 grams of protein per serve. Just be sure not to overdo it, as it tends to be very high in sodium and saturated fat.

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